UK MPs approve bill to deport asylum seekers to Rwanda

(MENAFN) The British Parliament has passed the contentious Safety of Rwanda Bill, granting Prime Minister Rishi Sunak the authority to deport asylum seekers to Rwanda, sparking widespread debate and condemnation over human rights implications. Despite facing staunch opposition in both the House of Lords and Commons, the legislation has now been approved, signaling a significant shift in the United Kingdom's approach to immigration and asylum policy.

In response to the parliamentary approval, the Home Office issued a statement emphasizing the bill's importance in advancing the government's agenda to curb illegal migration and address the challenge of asylum seekers arriving via irregular routes. Describing it as a "major step forward," the government outlined plans to proceed with operational preparations for deportation flights to Rwanda, heralding what they consider to be a pioneering solution to the global issue of illegal migration.

The United Kingdom's agreement with Rwanda, forged in April 2022, aimed to facilitate the deportation of illegal immigrants to the East African nation. However, logistical challenges and legal hurdles, including interventions by the European Court of Human Rights and rulings from the United Kingdom's highest court deeming Rwanda unsafe for deportees, have hindered the implementation of the scheme. Despite these setbacks, Sunak's government introduced the Safety of Rwanda Bill as a means to solidify Rwanda's status as a purported safe haven for refugees and to circumvent further legal obstacles to the deportation plan.

The bill's passage has been met with criticism from various quarters, with concerns raised by the United Nations and the British Parliamentary Committee on Human Rights about its legality and potential repercussions. Critics argue that the legislation poses a threat to the United Kingdom's reputation and violates international human rights standards. Additionally, the House of Lords previously voiced support for a motion urging parliament to reject the bill, highlighting the contentious nature of the government's approach to immigration policy.

As the United Kingdom moves forward with plans to implement the Safety of Rwanda Bill, the debate surrounding its implications for asylum seekers and the broader refugee protection framework is likely to intensify, underscoring the complex and contentious nature of immigration policy in contemporary society.



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